HSE addresses stress

HSE offers practical guides to help organisations tackle work-related stress

More than three-quarters of workers believe stress in the workplace needs to
be controlled in the same way as other health and safety issues – but nearly
half say their organisation has no means to tackle it, a study has found.

The research by the HSE was undertaken to find out what impact its
three-year drive on work-related stress has had so far.

While 79 per cent of workers polled believed workplace stress needed to be
controlled in the same way as health and safety issues, more promisingly, 40
per cent of those surveyed said their organisation had taken steps to reduce

Follow-up interviews with respondents found 35 per cent said their
organisation had used some sort of primary level intervention to tackle the

But nearly half – 42 per cent of those polled – said their organisation was
unaware of any resources to help them tackle work-related stress.

Elizabeth Gryngell, senior policy manager at the HSEs health directorate,
said publicity was all well and good, but only action by managers could tackle
the issue.

The HSE began its campaign to raise awareness of work-related stress back in
November, when it launched National Stress Awareness Day as part of a wider
Health and Safety Commission strategy on the issue.

It said it hoped to see significant improvements on the latest figures when
the study is revisited at the end of the campaign.

The next phase of its campaign is to publish a comprehensive set of guides
to help organisations tackle what is now recognised as one of the largest
causes of occupational ill health in the country.

These guides will provide practical advice on how to go about tackling the
problem of workplace stress, said the HSE.

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